It’s only Tuesday and my suitcase is still full of clean clothes, but all the Pearl’s pretty dresses are vying for my Visa. So many styles, so few credit cards.
With visions of bold patterns, plentiful pockets, sleek lines, fruity hues, layered hemlines and easy-does-it fabrics already increasing my heart rate, I down a double latte at Via Delizia (1105 NW Marshall; 503-225-9300) – what greater fortification does a stylista need? – and begin my hunt for a knock-out frock (or two).
Window shopping earlier in the week provided my morning targets for today: architectural lines – including a gorgeous jumper – at Physical Element (1124 NW Lovejoy; 503-224-5425); Palm Desert styles at Mabel & Zora 748 NW 11th);
and flirty cut-rate designer dresses at Olivia Belle (110 NW Ninth).
After refueling at Paragon (1309 N.W. Hoyt; 503-833-5060) – will I still fit in that dress after a Paragon burger with white cheddar and rosemary fries? – I head out for Round Two. This time, I’m tempted by two possibilities – a chic apron dress and romantic frock with fluttery sleeves – at Nolita (923 NW 10th; 503-274-7114) and a just-below-the-knee (why do the young and the shapely look best in the short stuff?), citrus-colored dress, replete with signature pleats, at Babette (208 NW 13th, 503-228-0407).
Looks like those clothes I brought from home can stay in the suitcase for another day.
Cutlines from spread photos:
Short and sweet: Olivia Belle owner Lindsay Jackson wears a Miguelina silk-organza mini-dress in sugary maraschino cherry. The party dress’s wide boat neck and mid-collarbone silk flower showcase the shoulders, an enviable body part this season. Jackson, who sells designer clothes for cut-rate prices in her outlet store, says the luscious yet modest mini ($200) is “simply a very fun piece.”
Plentiful pockets: Helmut Lang’s short black apron dress ($339) from Nolita is decorated with enough pockets to manage major multi-tasking. Its string-like belt and cowl-like neckline combine unexpected details with simple lines. Julieanna Little takes it to The Casey’s penthouse terrace with a pair of Jeffery Campbell platform sandals ($95) at Shoefly, 718 N.W. 11th Ave. Jewelry is from Allison Jones, a Portland stylist.
Details, details: Model Kerstin John-Ellis makes the fine points count in this buff-colored linen jumper by the French label, Decca. Physical Element owner Jo Carter says the zip-off pockets and asymmetrical layered hemline build a piece that’s “not your average jumper. The clean lines and surprising details are modern. Its architectural shape plays with the body. It has an edgy timeliness.” Chie Mihara sandals ($345) are from Olive Shoes. The Amy Downs Hat ($70) and 1480 Degrees Jewelry (ring, $40; necklace, $50) are from Physical Element.
Red, white and bubbly blue: What could be more politically correct this month than that all-American trio of colors? The Veronica M slip-on dress ($104) from Mabel & Zora is free of buttons and zippers, but certainly not details.
Chevron-patterned blue and white stripes at the waistline and a ruched neckline make the most of curves (and the least of flaws). Mabel & Zora owner Tiffanee Bean suggests dressing it down with a white cardigan and a pair of flats or flip-flops, or spiffing it up with red peep-toe heels (from model Roxana Rodriguez’s collection) and an Iris Tyler lipstick-red Italian leather bag ($139).
Prints galore: Reflecting the arty décor of The Casey’s lobby (NW 12th and Everett), Julieanna Little wears a floaty silk Charlotte Ronson “flutter-sleeve” dress ($259) from Nolita. A showy zipper runs up the back and an empire bodice adds bold details. Wear it on its own, free as a breeze, or pair it up with leggings or over jeans. The vivid colors conjure up Mondrian-like modern art, a welcome contrast to colder-season sober blacks and browns, says Nolita manager Katy Kippen.
View PDF of entire spread